Saturday, November 15, 2008

Delays of the Final Crisis Sort

Too much reading right now. You have any idea how hard it is to figure out what's going on in Final Crisis when you spent nearly a year out of comics? Honestly, Morrison is kicking some bizarre ass on Batman but Final Crisis makes no sense right now. And Johns is building up the Lanterns for The Blackest Night event next year so no help there. Superman is tied up in the New Krypton series and I can't find the first issue of the Brainiac arc. Basically I'm lost but I won't let anyone tell me what's going on since I want to read it myself. I could type appraisals, read books on marketing, novels that are stacking up again or reading the blogs, but no, it's comics for me right now. Fucking DC and Grant Morrison.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Fundamentalist Trapped In Reality

It's a day of Sullivan posts, sans Gilbert and Sullivan music sadly. In this post obviously the topic is Gov. Palin, her fundamentalism and fundamentalist religion in general. Sullivan is responding to the comments of a reader arguing that you cannot understand the thinking of Gov. Palin without prefacing it with an understanding of her religious background. This, of course, is true but a subject Sullivan has dealt with in his year-old book The Conservative Soul.
For Sullivan, it's not so much that figures like Gov. Palin or President Bush willfully ignore reality but their fundamentalist beliefs (such as the inerrancy of the Bible) force contradictions within the Bible itself and emperical reality that doesn't jive with the divine text into a sort of non-existence within their psyche. The only problem is reality and contradictions have a habit of continuing to intrude in one's life (such as President Bush's perception of the Iraq War and the reality on the ground). Contrary to what you might think, the schizophrenic mentality it takes to maintain the convictions of fundamentalism are not necessarily overriden by reality. With the case of Gov. Palin one sees a woman so steeped within the fundamentalist psyche that, even if you pierce through her perceptions, whatever information is conveyed is ultimately an abberation devil-derived, or further evidence of their correctness. Either way, further discussion of the topic is no longer needed. Hence the "lalalalala" attitude comes so naturally to fundamentalists while appearing freakishly psychotic to everyone else.
Even when ultimately defeated, either by a superior ideology or obsolesence through time, fundamentalists not only refuse to recognize the defeat, they claim a faltering of the faith, a conspiracy of sinners or even a Job-like test they must endure. Reality has influence over the minds of fundamentalists; it serves as a reminder of why they must maintain their faith and a confirmation of their own righteousness. Trying to sway the fundamentalist psyche is akin to deprogramming Manchurian candidates or women lost in abusive relationships. It is possible, but the break from one perceptual reality to another is traumatizing in its own right. Better to ease the fundamentalist psyche out through marginalization and natural shifts in generational thinking. It took nearly four decades to reach this point in the culture war of America but I'm optimistic that moving away from it will happen quickly--say a decade or less. At least that's what I hope.

Where Is Home (Burial Remix)

Sullivan links to an article by Fareed Zakaria that argues for a movement toward the center by President Obama, but the center of what. Going by the title of Sullivan's post alone one would have to conclude that center lies not in America. But Sullivan lets Zakaria do most of the talking as he argues that the next decade will see the global GDP driven almost entirely by the Third World. This is the New World Sullivan refers to and on national security issues as well as economic ones the strong suggestion is that President Obama move to that center versus a center between liberalism and a failed Republican ideology. Sullivan uses Zakaria's article to further his argument that true conservative ideology needs to divorce itself from the Republican party if it is to survive. But more than that, the arguments of both men are that President Obama should become a global leader again. The implied suggestion is that President Obama should ditch the hoary old idea of American exceptionalism and take the reigns of the First World to pull it out of the deepening recession. Whether that's possible is a question left unasked and unanswered. Personally, I don't have an answer either, except to let the S1W take the lead on that. I bet you Chuck D has some spare time these days.

LOLcat Saves Morning

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Chuck Norris is Made of Douche-Baggery

So it seems that one Chuck Norris of interwibble fame and movie infamy has written an open letter to President-Elect Obama. Quite the read if you dare. I supposed all that masculinity Mr. Norris has built up shrank is brain. I mean, honestly, calling out a constitutional scholar to read the Constitution? That takes stupidity to a whole new level. Then again, Mr. Norris must have traveled to some far-away rock to live under since he missed the whole campaign slogan, "Yes We Can," and President-Elect Obama's contant refrain of saying that the struggles of the present and future are everyone's struggle. Norris really is coming from the Republican cocoon to make such blatentaly ignorant claims and arguments. That's all they have left? Will the real conservative party please stand up?